LIFESTYLE

It’s Met Gala time again — here’s what we know so far

Apr 21, 2023, 10:22 AM | Updated: Apr 28, 2023, 3:34 pm

This combination of photos shows Michaela Coel, from left, Penelope Cruz, Dua Lipa and Roger Federe...

This combination of photos shows Michaela Coel, from left, Penelope Cruz, Dua Lipa and Roger Federer who will co-chair the Met Gala on May 1. (AP Photo)
Credit: ASSOCIATED PRESS

(AP Photo)

NEW YORK (AP) — Last year, it took 275,000 bright pink roses to adorn the Metropolitan Museum of Art for the Met Gala, the biggest night in fashion and one of the biggest concentrations of star power anywhere.

It remains to be seen how the theme not without controversy — Lagerfeld was known for contentious remarks about everything from #MeToo to curvy bodies.

Want to know what to expect as the big day approaches? Not to worry. We’ve dusted off our annual guide for you here, with some key updates.

WHAT IS THE MET GALA ANYWAY?

It started in 1948 as a society midnight supper, and wasn’t even at the Met.

Fast forward 70-plus years, and the Met Gala is something totally different, one of the most photographed events in the world for its head-spinning red carpet — though the carpet isn’t always red.

We’re talking Blake Lively’s Versace dress — a tribute to iconic New York architecture — that changed colors in front of our eyes.

Then denied by Ripley’s, that she’d caused some damage. But still — that was an entrance. (And, folks, she’s coming back — she posted a photo from Paris with Lagerfeld’s famous cat, Choupette, noting she was in the French capital scoping out possibilities for this year’s attire.)

It’s important to note that the party has a purpose — last year, the evening the annual spring exhibit that brings hundreds of thousands of visitors to the museum.

But it’s the carpet itself that draws the world’s eyes, with the guest list — strategically withheld until the last minute — featuring a collection of notables from movies, music, fashion, sports, politics and social media that arguably makes for the highest celebrity wattage-per-square-foot of any party in the world.

WHO’S HOSTING THIS YEAR?

Anna Wintour (do we need to tell you she’s in fashion?) running the whole thing as usual.

IS THERE ALWAYS A THEME?

Yes. As mentioned above, the theme is Met’s star curator, Andrew Bolton.

DOES EVERYONE FOLLOW THE THEME?

Not really. Some eschew it and just go for theme was “Heavenly Bodies: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination” and Rihanna came as the pope, Zendaya channeled Joan of Arc, and Perry navigated the crowd with a set of enormous angel wings. For Lagerfeld, the clothes may be a bit more, er, down to earth.

HOW MUCH DO I HAVE TO PAY FOR A MET GALA TICKET?

Wrong question. You cannot just buy a ticket. The right question is: If I were famous or powerful and got invited, how much would it cost?

OK, IF I WERE FAMOUS OR POWERFUL AND GOT INVITED, HOW MUCH WOULD IT COST?

Well, you might not pay yourself. Generally companies buy tables. A fashion label would then host its desired celebrities. This year, the cost has gone up, as it does every few years due to rising expenses: It’s now $50,000 for an individual ticket, and tables start at $300,000.

SO WHO GETS INVITED?

This year, there will be roughly 400 guests — similar to recent years but still lower than pre-pandemic highs of 500-600. Wintour and her team still get to approve every guest.

Trying to predict? Take out your pen and jot down some of your favorite names, the buzzier the better. Newly minted Oscar winners, for example, are a good bet. fashionable Federer’s first Met Gala. Now, cross everyone off your list except the very top. At this gala, everybody’s A-list.

THAT MUST BE AN EXAGGERATION.

Not really. Ask Barbara Walters.

HOW CAN I WATCH?

You can watch the whole carpet unfold on Timothée Chalamet has been known to greet fans.

DO WE KNOW WHO’S COMING? AND WHO ISN’T?

It’s secret. But reports slip out. You can count on various celebrity Chanel ambassadors showing up. Lively left some fashion fans disappointed when she revealed she’s not attending this year.

WHAT HAPPENS INSIDE?

Entering the museum, Cocktails are 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., but the most famous — or those who plan to make the biggest entrance — sometimes come (fashionably) later.

Around 8 p.m., guests are summoned to dinner — perhaps by a team of buglers (“Are they going to do that between every course?” actor Gary Oldman asked aloud one year).

IS IT FUN FOR EVERYONE?

Occasionally, someone says no. Fey, in a comic rant to David Letterman in 2015, described the gala as a “jerk parade” and said it included everyone you’d ever want to punch, if you had millions of arms. Amy Schumer left early in 2016 and said later she felt awkward and like it was “a punishment.”

SO THEY NEVER CAME BACK, RIGHT?

Wrong. Schumer was back in 2017. And then last year again.

Hey, this is the Met Gala.

___

For more coverage of the 2023 Met Gala, visit https://apnews.com/hub/met-gala

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It’s Met Gala time again — here’s what we know so far